Avainsana: legal industry

Episode 49: Creating Tech Friendly Ecosystems for Law with Teemu Oksanen

Teemu Oksanen.

In this episode we focus on creating tech friendly ecosystems for law. We meet with Teemu Oksanen, a general counsel at Futurice. Teemu is a forerunner when it comes to implementing technology into legal work. As we know, the legal industry has been quite slow with technology, but the pandemic really shifted the focus on how to deliver legal services in more modern way. The right technology can improve the client experience also in legal industry as it might speed up the delivery and make law more understandable to end users.

Often, when we talk about legal tech, we focus on how it might help lawyers. Teemu and his team at Futurice has focused on the end users of law and started implementing technology that could make law easier to understand and use  for their clients. With his team he has automated legal work to help non-lawyers understand what law is about and how to use it in every day business life. And this has been really successful for both the end users but also for the lawyers. Automating tasks and processes has freed up the time for lawyers to concentrate on more meaning work.

As we learn in this episode, what happens before implementing technology is really important. Teemu shares his experience on how to drive the change in legal departments and orgniszations and what importance design thinking has in these projects.

Teemu Oksanen is a tech-savvy in-house lawyer with a law firm background currently working as General Counsel at a full-service digital innovation company Futurice. He is a huge fan of legal tech. He thinks the practice of law is undergoing a major change, and that the change is for the good for both the lawyers and the society as a whole. In his free time, he loves to play with his two dogs, Lex and Dana.

Episode 44: Sprinkling Legal Design Candy to the Caves of Law with Laura Hartnett

Laura Hartnett.

We have to have the courage to embrace and share our own personality; not put down the personalities and unique qualities of others. And to reinforce this exchange – we need leadership.

Lawyering culture is often perceived as conservative, and somewhat difficult to change – the social structures that shape legal work today have not changed much from the 18th century.  The image of law – quite often – is white, middle-aged men working long hours drafting documents no-one else understands. It is no wonder if the lawyers of the 21st century find it unmotivating to pursue legal traditions that don’t support their values, viewpoints and wellbeing.

In this episode we meet with Laura Hartnett, a legal consultant whose mission is to make lawyer work better,  especially for female and minority lawyers. Laura wants to chuck the insane hours, endless drafts and revisions, and help lawyers redesign their work and business environment in a way that there is room for different personalities with different backgrounds. With Laura, we discuss how to identify the needs of different lawyers and what can be done to meet those needs and make lawyering better, for everybody.

We also discuss how legal design can increase the client commitment, and why it is important to create space for legal design having the future generation in mind.

Laura Hartnett is the founder and legal consultant at Law By Design. She has over 15 years of experience as a management consultant, litigator for national and international law firms, and in-house counsel for a Fortune 100 company. Today, she teaches lawyers how to redesign their practice of law from a human-centered approach, one that works better for both lawyers and clients, with a special aim to keep women and minorities staying and thriving in the practice of law. She is also a yoga addict, karaoke enthusiast, and proud mom of two creative girls.

Episode 23: Doing Law in the 21st Century with Astrid Kohlmeier and Meera Klemola

Meera Klemola (left) and Astrid Kohlmeier.

Access to justice, digitalization, billable hours, burning the midnight oil, comprehensibility, working culture… Those are the topics that often come up when discussing what needs to change in the legal industry. How to do law in the 21st Century with the tools and mindsets from the 18th Century? What would Astrid and Meera do?

In this episode we are joined by the legal design legends and leading global experts Astrid Kohlmeier and Meera Klemola. Astrid and Meera are also published authors, their book ”The Legal Design Book – Doing Law in the 21st Century” was published earlier this fall.

Astrid and Meera tell us about the book project (and give valuable tips for the legal publishing industry!). They also share their insights about the core elements of doing law in our era and why we are going through transformation as an industry exactly now. They both have tremendous experience on Legal Design projects and working with different clients and they help us imagine what can be legal designed with sharing some examples on those projects.

We are certain that after listening to this episode, everyone will see the benefits of Legal Design so clearly that it will definitely become the mainstream way of doing law in the 21st Century!

Astrid Kohlmeier is a lawyer and internationally
renowned legal design pioneer. She has been
combining law and design for more than 15 years, with senior roles in the insurance, litigation, finance, and service design industries. The legal design expert advises legal inhouse departments and law firms such as Clifford Chance, Linklaters, Airbus, SAP, NetApp and many more. Winner of several design awards as well as honoured as “woman of legal tech”, she develops user-centric legal solutions with a focus on innovation and digital transformation. Astrid is a member and lecturer of the Executive Faculty at the Bucerius Center on the Legal Profession, co-founder of the non-profit
organization “Liquid Legal Institute e.V.”, speaker at relevant conferences worldwide and works with a global network of legal designers. She is actively engaged at the intersection of education and method development to establish the profession of “ legal designers” worldwide.

Meera Klemola is globally recognised as one of the pioneering voices in Human Centred Design for legal professionals and legal business. Dubbed by The Legal Forecast as one of the first ‘Legal Designers’ and the host of the world’s first Legal Design Summit, Meera continues to lead and actively contribute to the discourse on the evolving role of design in law as well as corporate learning and development. Meera is a trusted advisor to some of the largest brands, corporations, law firms and in-house legal teams. She also co-teaches with professors at law schools, is a frequently requested keynote speaker at global innovation conferences
and company retreats and is a contributing author to various platforms on the topics of design in law, modern work and leadership. She holds multidisciplinary qualifications in law, design management and business.

17.Episode: Think Smaller with Michele DeStefano

Michele DeStefano.

“Start with you. And you start with you by actually becoming more self-aware, like Michael Jackson, “look at the man in the mirror”, or look at the woman in the mirror, or whoever is in the mirror, and figure out what you’re good at or what you’re not good at” says Michele DeStefano.

Just like everyone else, lawyers were born creative but somehow creativity is often lost with legal expertise. That’s how we might feel, but legal problem solving requires creativity and at the end of the day, lawyers are super creative. We are when it comes to strategy or problem solving. We just need to embrace our creativity and think what good it can bring to the legal industry. 

Along with creativity, the so-called “soft skills” or “people skills” are vital when making the law better. It is easy to think that some great ideas were just born magically overnight but we often forget that innovations require countless hours and very hard work to become reality. So not to worry if you haven’t succeeded with making your access to justice or virtual lawyer applications yet, you can do a lot to practice innovation and creativity skills. 

In this episode Henna and Nina talk to Michele DeStefano who believes that when lawyers figure out how to bring their childhood’s box of crayons back into their work, the world really opens up. Michele is known as an innovative person who has changed the legal industry emphasizing empathy and human-centrism by bringing out great ideas and projects that challenge the traditional ways of working. Tune in to listen to what motivates Michele to drive the change in the legal industry!

Michele DeStefano is recognized by the ABA as a Legal Rebel and by the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers (North America) as one of the top 20 most innovative lawyers. Michele D is a Professor of Law at the University of Miami and a Faculty Chair in Harvard Law School’s Executive Education Program and at IE School of Law. She is the founder of LawWithoutWalls, a part-virtual experiential learning community of more than 2,000 lawyers, business professionals, entrepreneurs, and students that leverages intergenerational, cross-culture, multi-disciplinary collaboration to create innovations in the business of law and, importantly, change the mindsets, skillsets, and behaviors of legal professionals. Recently, Michele helped co-create and spearhead the development of the Digital Legal Exchange, a non-profit designed to inspire general counsel and their teams to become digital leaders in their businesses to drive commercial value.

DeStefano researches, writes, and speaks about creative problem solving, collaboration, culture change, and innovation in law. Her latest books include Legal Upheaval: A Guide to Creativity, Collaboration, and Innovation in Law and New Suits: Appetite for Disruption.

3. Episode: DIY Legal Help with Erin Levine

Erin Levine

In this episode Henna and Nina talk about DIY Legal Help with Erin Levine, legal innovator and entrepreneur from California.

Erin shares the story behind her revolutionary online divorce platform Hello Divorce. The DIY platform helps people applying for divorce to navigate through the divorce process independently. Erin tells us who are the potential users for DIY legal help services and how technology has changed the way her team of lawyers work today. We also discuss what else should be changed in the legal industry by design. Why is it important to mitigate the negative image of legal problems, such as divorce? Do we also need a platform “Hello Bankruptcy”? And what is the one thing that almost all customers want from their legal services? Nina gets goosebumps by Erin’s inspiring mission to promote justice through tech, yet promises not to divorce her husband.

Erin Levine is a legal innovator, entrepreneur, and Certified Family Law Specialist. She is the CEO and Founder of Hello Divorce, an award winning online platform that helps self-represented folks navigate the divorce process on their own through a web platform, accessing legal help when they need additional help along the way.  As a young adult, she brought criminal and civil charges against a former gymnastics coach, and experienced the legal system as chaotic, confusing, and amplifying her trauma rather than bringing justice. She later became a divorce litigator. 

Despite her success as a law firm owner, she realized there must be a better way and pivoted into justice-technology. Erin works relentlessly to simplify family law, reduce trauma for those seeking relief from the court and help people get back on their feet. Her design centered and sustainable approach to the delivery of legal services has been recognized by the legal industry and beyond with recent accomplishments that include the American Bar Association‘s James I. Keane Memorial Award for Excellence in E-lawyering and Duke University School of Law’s Legal Tech Accelerator – Grand Prize. Erin’s current projects include raising her two daughters, Zoe and Mia, along with managing the national roll out of Hello Divorce’s products and services.